Most Companies’ Crisis Are Worse When Compounded By Industry Disruptive Forces With A Leadership Crisis.

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Companies that are facing industry disruptions are bad enough; during these times leadership faces the most important test – the ability to lead during a crisis. The need of foresight, change and organization design are what true leadership looks like. Some sees this an opportunity to gain power and fulfill their thirst for greed and this needs to be stopped. Because strategic leadership matters… whether through malice or naïveté, those who abuse or tolerate the abuse of leadership place companies at risk.

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Poor leadership cripples businesses abilities to accept new realities, correct mistakes and make strategic bets. At lower levels in the…
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Random Thoughts On Maturing Companies and Start-Ups. When Do You Need A Reset?

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In an interesting conversation with clients this week and discussions were around the question: “should companies plan for the distant future (10 years and beyond) and what is needed to get out of a death spiral where a slow death is in the making?”

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There is a big difference between growing with age and growing old. With age, it sometimes comes with wisdom. With more than a dozen of C-suite execs that I have worked with or coached, for most of them, the wisdom came one day after they had passed the age of 50. Growing comes with age, which sometimes take away the energy and urge to make radical change. Ask…
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Even If You See The End Is Coming. You Still Need A Strategy Out. It Is The Time To Think New Game.

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Almost all companies at some point face some serious crisis. Sometimes it is clear that the end is near or coming and no can see the light at the end of the tunnel, at least not until you see it. Sometimes you know there is a way out but not sure how.Facing with disruptive changes driven by innovative technologies or shifting regulations, it is clear that the strategy is no longer working. You see the demand of your products is disappearing or new business models or low cost payers are eating your lunch. What do you do?

There is often a short window of opportunity to do something radically different; it has to be drastically different. Any incremental change or window dressing will push you closer…
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There Is A Difference Between Business Turnaround and Business Transformation. It Is Easy To Tell Which Is Harder.

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All companies go through some kind of crisis at some point but what does it take to get out of it? There aren’t many successful turnarounds in large companies and the bigger the company and the longer the history, the more difficult it is for any turnaround and its success rate is lower. 

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Harley Davidson in mid-life crisis when Richard Teerlink joined the company in 1981 as CFO, the company had US market share of 15% and reported a loss of $15m. The company was killed by its strong Japanese competitor led…
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Robert Parker’s Wine Scoring System Can Be Applied In Business Too.

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Robert Parker is the most widely known and influential wine critic in the world today. His popular wine scoring system was the first simple way to determine the quality of wine. Parker is known for his preference for powerful reds from Napa and the Rhone and has inadvertently made becoming a wine critic almost impossible, since— in part because of the success of his scoring system. That takes a lot of fun away. Can you imagine we have scorecards for wine, food, paintings, music and dance? We can do that for business but not for art. Wine is art. Well perhaps business is art too!

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Five Deadly Mistakes of Organization Transformation That Leaders Must Avoid.

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So you are ready to transform your organization? You want your organization to leapfrog the industry? You want to deliver above industry average growth? And do you know what are the most common mistakes that leaders and even very smart and experienced leaders make? The most common one is sticking with the usual way, the easy way and the proven way. There is no usual, easy and safe way if the company has not been doing well or satisfactorily underperforming. It is not just about making a good product anymore. Leaders need to ask how does one make a meaningful contribution to society with product?

Whenever I was tasked to help global enterprises to move the next level, the first thing I did was to stop…
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Do You Know What A Growth Strategy Is?

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This marks the end of another year. A very busy and fruitful year for us. Personally I was on the road for more than 200 days and I need to take a break – perhaps 3 days. What about my New Year's resolution? I need to cut down on drive and email. I need to cut down on attending unprodcutive meetings. I need to find three people to mentor that they can become the best. I need to revisit places from my childhood that were memorable. I need to back up my hard drive (I am 96 days behind). I need to produce a mini feature film and shot entirely with my HTC phone. I need to cut down on my public…
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The Best Kept Secrets Of Breakthrough. Everyone Should Start Practicing Them.

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Everyone is looking for a breakthrough. The massive shift in generation differences in consumer behavior and rapid technological shift are casuing many companies to fail…. and it will happen fast. Companies that are stuck in their old mental model cannot breakout for many reasons. It is usually a combination of all that causes them to be irrelevant. It includes leadership’s blind sight, organization legacies and lack of foresights and the list goes on and on…

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How often companies can act swiftly and not taking a wait and see attitude? All the time. It takes strong leadership to take bold decisions even though…
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Let’s Not Confuse Drawing Circles And Arrows With Real Sensemaking.

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As everything is moving faster and less predictable as it seems while organizations struggling to understand what it means and what options to take and how to land on the right decisions at the right time.The results often are inactions or delayed repsonses that cost companies.

Both senior and middle managers’ job include understanding, interpreting and communicating options for executive decisions, both as change agents and advocates. The toolkit that they have is very limited. Sensemaking is a vital skill and a new managerial discipline that is lacking across many organizations and functional units. How do we define sensemaking? It is how we try to make sense of the world and associated challenges so we can see and act in it. It also carries the concept…
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How Do Breakthroughs Happen? Here’s My Little Secrets For Breakthroughs After Helping Executives For Decades..

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How do breakthroughs happen? Can they be engineered? Are they pure luck? Or are they the result of skills that we can develop and improve upon over time? Along with the fear of the unknown and the pressure to make it happen, breakthroughs come with an incredible sense of possibility and satisfaction.

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The experience of uncovering a breakthrough is exhilarating and hard to explain. It’s a sense of not knowing exactly where I am going, but knowing that I am going somewhere. Here’s my secrets to achieving breakthroughs:

Preserve the “Me”. The…
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